The Kensington Arts Theatre won four awards for its musical production, “Sunday in the Park with George,” at the annual WATCH ceremony on Sunday in Virginia.
The 2012 Washington Area Theatre Community Honors awards, which recognize outstanding work by community theaters in the Washington, D.C., area, were announced at the Birchmere in Alexandria.
Director Craig Pettinati, who founded Kensington Arts Theatre and directed “Sunday in the Park with George,” tied for Outstanding Direction of a Musical with Christopher Dykton of The Arlington Players for “A Little Night Music.”
“We both won with Sondheim shows,” said Pettinati, noting that Sondheim’s musicals are difficult to stage.
“It’s an honor to run in such a tough category,” Pettinati said. “His show was hard and my show was hard. I admire Chris Dykton, he’s a great director.”
Other “Sunday in the Park with George” winners included Eleanor Dicks for Outstanding Costume Design in a Musical; Kevin Garrett for Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical and Jordan Rose and Doe B. for Outstanding Special Effects.
Pettinati said video was projected on a screen to show the progress of the painting being done by George, a fictionalized version of French painter Georges Seurat, who painted “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte” in the late 1800s.
“The projection had to mesh with the music and the lines,” Pettinati said. “There were about 200 video cues and 200 lighting cues. We were painting it as the audience watches him paint, adding people, little by little.”
Kevin Boyce of the Kensington Arts Theatre also won an award for Outstanding Light Design for “Night of the Living Dead, the Musical.”
Also recognized from Montgomery County was the Damascus Theatre Company.
Actor Chrissy Barnett Miller won Outstanding Cameo in a Musical as “Jolene Oakes” in “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.”
“It was a complete surprise to win,” Miller, who has been active with the company since 2011, said in an email. “This was my third WATCH nomination, so it was really unexpected.”
I couldn’t have done it without the love and support of family and friends, especially my husband Kevin,” she said. “He watched our 3-month-old daughter while I went to the award ceremony.”
Damascus Theatre Company, which performs at various locations, will present its next show, “My Favorite Year,” in June at the Arts Barn in Gaithersburg.
A total of 126 productions from 2012 [83 plays and 43 musicals] were judged with 33 community theater companies participating.
For a complete list of winners by theater company and by category, visit www.washingtontheatre.org.